Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

I need help making peace with my girlfriend's tattoos

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • I need help making peace with my girlfriend's tattoos

    Hi everyone,

    I know that this is going to seem really silly, but it's causing me a lot of stress and anxiety. I'll just tell the whole story so you have the full context and timeline.

    My girlfriend and I met online and had our first date was back in October. We are head over heels in love with each other, everything is perfect. We have common interests, passions, and are just completely infatuated with everything about each other.

    We first slept together about two weeks after our first date, and that's when I first learned of her tattoos. She has one smallish one on her right side (like on the ribs), and another slightly larger one on her left hip. She told me about them and why she got them, and I was like "oh, huh, okay!" and I said I'm not really into tattoos, and she said that's totally fine! And that was it. For two months after that I was blissfully with her, giving no thought or care to the tattoos, they didn't bother me at all.

    Shortly after a Christmas family gathering, I began to feel a general anxiety about the relationship, and within a day or two that anxiety seemed to clarify itself as a problem with the tattoos. I suddenly couldn't stop thinking about them and how they prevent me from seeing her totally naked. I had awful anxiety about it for days, and finally brought it up with her. She was more than happy to talk with me more about them and help me understand why she got them and her feelings about them. It didn't help. After another week of bad anxiety, I brought it up again and said that I was still feeling really frustrated with the fact that I'll never be able to see her 'completely naked' in her natural skin.

    Her reasons for getting them, and her thoughts and feelings about them, are really really awesome. She has a really unique relationship with them and unique reasons for having gotten them, which I respect completely, and her thoughts about them are clearly a part of the person that I adore so much. I just am having trouble getting past the fact that they are like a covering on the skin that will forever prevent me from seeing her pure naked, natural body. I just strongly feel that without them, she would look significantly more 'naked' than she does with them. And I know that's how I would feel if they weren't there, that's not just a feeling. Whenever I see her at an angle where they aren't visible, it's very very clear to me.

    I love her beyond words, she is above and beyond everything I could have ever hoped to find in a partner, and I have never for a second considered breaking up with her over this. I would rather continue feeling anxiety about the tattoos than lose her. Talking to her about my feelings about them only made me all the more certain that she is way too amazing to even think about giving up. The fact that she was so open to talk about it with me, and that I was able to share literally everything I've shared here, with her, and have an open conversation about it, blew me away. She could read this post and not learn anything new about my thoughts or feelings in the relationship.

    So I need to find a way to make peace with those tattoos, ideally come to love them. Why do I get hung up on the feeling that they 'hide' her 'complete nakedness' from me? Whenever she tells me about some event in her past that was at a point in time prior to when she got them, I think about the fact that she didn't have them then, and wished that I could have known her then. I get jealous of the guys she was with prior to having gotten them, because they got her naked in a way I can't.

    Why was I able to go two months with her without it being a problem for me?

    I need to change my narrative and my perspective on them, I need to include them in my image of "her," I need to see them as part of who she is, as much as she does. She is literally perfect in every other way in my eyes, and we are hopelessly in love, breaking up is not an option.

    Help!

    Thank you!


  • #2
    So if she had warts all over her side, would you complain that you can't see her completely naked? If she had a huge red birthmark on her chest, would you obsess that you can't see her naked?

    You need to stop being silly. You claim you love her and respect her reasons for getting the tats. Stop inventing problems that don't exist.
    "What lips my lips have kissed and where and why I have forgotten." ~Edna St. Vincent Millay

    Comment


    • #3
      It's something about how unnatural and out of place tattoos look. Warts or birthmarks would be a natural part of her body, she'd still look completely naked, it wouldn't look like there's drawings covering part of her skin. I do love her, so much, I just wish I could see her body completely as it is naturally; I feel like with the tattoos she can never look as completely naked as she would without them. It's so frustrating. And I don't understand why I wasn't bothered by them for the first few months.

      Comment


      • #4
        Because you don't have enough real hardships in your life to worry about, so you have to create issues. Let it go, Dude. She obviously loves the tattoos or she wouldn't have them. She's going to get tired of your negative attitude towards her body. There are plenty of men out there who would, no doubt, love them.
        "What lips my lips have kissed and where and why I have forgotten." ~Edna St. Vincent Millay

        Comment


        • #5
          Life's too short mate. Stop worrying about such trivial matters!

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by SarahLancaster View Post
            Because you don't have enough real hardships in your life to worry about, so you have to create issues. Let it go, Dude. She obviously loves the tattoos or she wouldn't have them. She's going to get tired of your negative attitude towards her body. There are plenty of men out there who would, no doubt, love them.
            I tell her every day how I feel her body is the most perfect, sexy body I've ever seen/felt, and I mean it 100%. She understands that my feelings about the tattoos are about me wanting to see More of that body that I love so much, in its 'original, natural' form. We've talked about this completely openly and I've told her that I intend to do everything I can to work through my hangups about the tattoos, and posting on this board is part of that. Thank you for the responses so far. Does anyone here understand why I would feel like the tattoos prevent me from ever seeing her completely naked? And could offer an alternative perspective/framing of the issue for me to consider?

            Comment


            • #7
              You can't say that you tell her every day that her body is perfect and then in the next breath tell you're working through your hangups about her body. If I had tattoos and my boyfriend had to 'work through' his hangups about my body, he'd be working them out by himself, permanently.
              "What lips my lips have kissed and where and why I have forgotten." ~Edna St. Vincent Millay

              Comment


              • #8
                This is nonsense. What is your relationship history and why have your other relationships ended? And have you been treated for your anxiety in the past?

                You're not anxious about the tattoos. You're anxious about the relationship.
                Last edited by Pollon; January 14th, 2018, 05:54 AM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by anonymous5 View Post
                  It's something about how unnatural and out of place tattoos look. Warts or birthmarks would be a natural part of her body, she'd still look completely naked, it wouldn't look like there's drawings covering part of her skin. I do love her, so much, I just wish I could see her body completely as it is naturally; I feel like with the tattoos she can never look as completely naked as she would without them. It's so frustrating. And I don't understand why I wasn't bothered by them for the first few months.
                  I brought it up again and said that I was still feeling really frustrated with the fact that I'll never be able to see her 'completely naked' in her natural skin
                  You need professional help.

                  Go see a therapist and chew this out with him/her.
                  "First off, welcome to the Relationship Forums, You'll come to understand that I don't pull any punches when giving my opinion/advice and I hope you're not so sensitive to what I see as the truth of the matter." Me!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    That is her natural skin. "HER" natural skin. DO you also complain because the Mona Lisa has clothes on? No because it's "art." Just like her tattoos

                    All that cannot be explained.......... is art!
                    There is overwhelming evidence that the higher the level of self-esteem, the more likely one will treat others with respect, kindness, and generosity. People who do not experience self-love have little or no capacity to love others.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      She's gone through deeper experiences in her life than you have had in your life prior and it's making you insecure. The tattoos are a manifestation of prior lived experiences without you and a visual reminder of what you've never experienced. I think you may even have a thing for tattoos yourself but you've never had the opportunity to explore it nor would you accept it because of whatever cultural norms you have in your mind. If you dislike tattoos, sure, ignore anyone with tattoos. Don't make someone else pay for your dislike and disdain. You asked for help to make peace. You should make peace within yourself and love yourself before you go about trying to love someone else.

                      I also agree with the other fact someone else mentioned that the tattoos are her skin and they are a part of her. It's like saying you don't like someone because of their blue eyes. For anyone with tattoos especially ones with special meaning, it goes a lot deeper than skin deep.
                      Last edited by Rose Mosse; January 15th, 2018, 04:43 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        These are really great and insightful replies, thank you. To answer some questions, when she and I met I had been on 10mg of Lexapro for about two months at that point. I stopped taking it after a month of being with her, and it was about a month after that that this anxiety came up 'about the tattoos.' I am currently taking it again, as of 10 days ago. I have also discussed this with a therapist, though I'm currently looking for a new one.

                        When we discuss her tattoos, I always make it very clear that I deeply respect and admire everything about Her, the experiences she went through, her feelings, her reasons for getting the tattoos, etc. They are a lot deeper than skin deep for sure, and she knows that I respect and adore everything but the actual skin-deep part of it, which I'm having a hangup over simply because it makes me feel like I can't see her totally naked. But of course I wouldn't be surprised if the reason I have that hangup goes deeper.

                        She also understands that the tattoos are different from her eye color, because she wasn't born with them and they are not a natural part of her body. I'm very grateful that she's so open and willing to talk with me about it and help me understand them better. We love each other a lot, and neither of us have the slightest doubt or hesitation about being together.

                        I have a hunch that Rose Mosse is right, that it's an insecurity on my part at the root of my problem. How do I go about addressing that insecurity and working on it?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          You seem like a nice guy who just wants the best for the both of you but you're dwarfed by these (apparently) sudden emotions towards her tattoos. Can I ask if you feel a bit intimidated by any explicit details she's ever shared with you in her previous love life or places she's been? When she connects the tattoos to various points in time in her life, do you sense residual connections to those places and people?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I think you should recommend that she get another tattoo. That will help you to work on it.
                            "What lips my lips have kissed and where and why I have forgotten." ~Edna St. Vincent Millay

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Rose Mosse View Post
                              You seem like a nice guy who just wants the best for the both of you but you're dwarfed by these (apparently) sudden emotions towards her tattoos. Can I ask if you feel a bit intimidated by any explicit details she's ever shared with you in her previous love life or places she's been? When she connects the tattoos to various points in time in her life, do you sense residual connections to those places and people?
                              I can't say I've felt intimidated by any details about her life. Again, I love the connections between the tattoos and her past and the reasons she got them. They are an expression of herself as the current, more whole person that she is, the person I love, as opposed to the insecure, incomplete person she apparently used to be in the past. She's said that her pre-tattoo self was sad, and that I'm getting wayyy more than any other guy had ever gotten with her. Apparently I'm the first guy she's ever been able to think about a future with without feeling anxious. And she says that with me she feels way more loved for exactly who she is than she's ever felt with anyone else, and I do honestly love everything about who she is.

                              I have actually thought about the third tattoo thing, as well as exploring the possibility of getting one myself, though I don't think I'm quite there yet, on either count.

                              I feel like I'm going to be able to get over this, I really do. But at the moment there's just something I'm still getting stuck on and I can't quite put my finger on it. I wish the tattoos weren't there so I could see her completely naked.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X